Authored by T. Markus Funk, Paul Hirose and Barak Cohen
Perkins Coie’s Supply Chain team has compiled the following key considerations for businesses as they evaluate their supply chains in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19).
- Analyze supply chain mapping for potential “weak links”:
- Identify any reliance on one or a limited source for critical materials and relevant contractual rights to diversify suppliers.
- Identify regions where product may already be inaccessible due to worker shortage and any viable legal recourse to recover damages.
- Notify customers of anticipated changes or cancellations in delivery.
- Reassess supplier and product contingency plans, including backup logistics plans.
- Task a regulatory/compliance committee to monitor new laws and emergency orders:
- Identify where emergency orders, such as shelter-in-place directives, impact suppliers, customers, and the organization.
- Survey proposed legislation or executive orders that may affect imports and exports.
- Identify regions where product may already be inaccessible due to worker shortage or where it may be difficult to transport product.
- Based on current news, forecast regions where product may soon be inaccessible due to worker shortage or where it may be difficult to transport product.
- Increase internal awareness of the potential for desperate vendors offering corrupt payments/bribes in seeking to circumvent laws and regulations.
- Prepare for bribery and kickback investigations in the public sector prompted by concerns that government officials have offered preferential treatment during this crisis and/or in the recovery period to follow:
- Scrupulously account for any crisis or bailout funds that you receive and ensure that your employees are following public and private sector anti-corruption policies (and if you lack such policies, implement them right away).
- While confronting today’s challenges, begin mapping proposed future supply chains and business partnerships, as the business landscape may soon look much different.
- Keep track of the lessons learned during this crisis for later review so that you can update policies and procedures accordingly.